With the salary cap skyrocketing, there might be only one player in the entire NBA with a player option who should have opted in.
And he opted out.
Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders:
Anderson played just 14.1 minutes per game in 51 games with the Kings this season. He shot 37% from the field and 27% on 3-pointers and had more turnovers than assists. At 27, he might be headed out of the NBA.
And he might make more overseas. By opting out, he maximizes his chances of landing with a top European team if that’s the route he wants to go.
But if he opted in, I think there’s a good chance the Kings would’ve waived him. They could probably use the roster spot, and with the cap so high, eating his salary (and probably stretching it) means less than ever.
So, Anderson misses the chance to double dip (though some of his next contract could potentially be set off by Sacramento).
He also misses the opportunity to receive a share of next season’s shortfall check, which the NBA will give the players union to distribute. The league is required to spend a certain percentage of revenue and projects to fall about $500 million short next season. The league also paid a shortfall last season (reportedly $57,298,826) and will again this season. Last year, the shares were split among players based on games of service with a minimum of one. If the union followed the same script and Anderson were waived before the regular season, he wouldn’t have gotten any shortfall money. But the union has not yet enacted a plan for this season, let alone next season. So, it’s possible a player with a guaranteed salary who’s waived before the season would get a share. If it’s proportional to a full share last year, it’d be worth more than $1 million.
Anderson isn’t making that up in Europe.
But there’s always a chance an NBA team signs him. And if not, at least he gets a jump on finding the best situation in a lower league.